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The Alcohol and Breast Cancer Connection

Since it's Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I thought you'd like to know that drinking any type of alcohol adds to the risk of developing breast cancer. We're talking, wine (even red), beer, and liquor. It has nothing to do with the kind of beverage you choose, it's the amount of alcohol you consume that could pose a problem.

Previous studies made a connection to alcohol and breast cancer risk, but there were conflicting views about what kinds of alcohol had this effect.

This new study analyzed 70,033 women of different races, from 1978 to 1985. By 2004, 2,829 of the participants were diagnosed with breast cancer. Researchers discovered that it didn't matter what kind of alcoholic drinks these women consumed, but the women that drank one to two servings of alcohol a day increased their risk of developing the disease by 10%. Women kicking back more than three drinks a day increased their risk by 30%.

I know that we've all been drilled to think that having a glass of red wine a day is healthy for our heart, but when it comes to breast cancer the same is not true. It's not clear why alcohol increases breast cancer risk, but some experts think it raises hormone levels in the blood, which could potentially cause cancer.

As with everything, moderation is the key. Enjoying an occasional drink is fine, but know that pounding a 6-pack every night may increase your risk for developing breast cancer.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Susannah Chen
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Join The Conversation
radha radha 7 years
this is very good information to us. =========================================== radha. Alcohol abuse affects millions. This site has a lot of useful information. http://alcoholabusecenter.com
missyc64 missyc64 8 years
All things in moderation, this is just another reminder that an excess of anything is unhealthy.
bluehippy bluehippy 8 years
i guess a lot more female teenagers are gonna be diagnosed with breast cancer this year and next year.
skinnyforme skinnyforme 8 years
That's why drinking is bad.
skinnyforme skinnyforme 8 years
That's why drinking is bad.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
Hmmm that's somehting I didn't know, 10% is quite high.I might have ONE drink after work on the weekdays (sometimes not even) and every now and then I go to the bar.So thank goodness I don't drink THAT much.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
Hmmm that's somehting I didn't know, 10% is quite high. I might have ONE drink after work on the weekdays (sometimes not even) and every now and then I go to the bar. So thank goodness I don't drink THAT much.
pink_magnetism pink_magnetism 8 years
Interesting.
pink_magnetism pink_magnetism 8 years
Interesting.
julieulie julieulie 8 years
I am certainly not a world expert, but I do believe that I know significantly more than the average Joe on the subject -- I have authored several papers in leading oncology and epidemiology journals on the relationship between breast cancer and alcohol. Frequently, increasing the amount of folate can decrease the chance of developing alcohol-induced breast cancer, so make sure you are taking in enough! Also, the media significantly overplays this association. In the vast majority of studies I have read, it takes 25+ drinks/week (over 3/day) to cause an absolute increase in breast cancer risks, when other factors are eliminated. Most media-promoted studies do not normalize for other factors, such as diet and lifestyle factor.
Hollie86 Hollie86 8 years
...EVERYTHING causes cancer these days.....
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I usually have about one drink a day, so I guess that doesn't increase my risk. You have to take into consideration OTHER risk factors as well though...weight, activity level, genetics, diet, etc. Lots of things can contribute to getting breast cancer.
AucuneRancune AucuneRancune 8 years
Wow. Bummer. Big bummer.
AucuneRancune AucuneRancune 8 years
Wow. Bummer. Big bummer.
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